Thursday, February 23, 2017

FEBRUARY 2017 BONEHEAD ABSURDITY OF THE MONTH


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1. Religions Right Activist, Gordon Klingenschmitt. On the latest episode of his “Pray In Jesus Name” program, Klingenschmitt said that gay people should never be allowed to serve as school teachers because they “should be disqualified immediately because of their immorality.”
 
Klingenschmitt was commenting on a report about a Minnesota elementary school teacher and his husband who allegedly abused multiple boys over the course of several years and then killed themselves once an investigation was launched. Klingenschmitt said that while these men were obviously possessed by “a demonic spirit of child abuse,” the school system and society as a whole also share the blame for allowing gay people to teach in public schools in the first place.
 
“As a culture now, the demonic spirit of homosexuality has taken over and redefined marriage, particularly in Minnesota, to tell these boys that it is okay,” he said. “And the demonic spirit of deception has taken over the school board or whoever decided, maybe the principal, decided to hire these child abusers to teach elementary school. Well, if anything, they should have been disqualified immediately because of their immorality, because the immorality inside of these two men are indicators that they are unfit to be a good example to little children.”
 
“This is evil upon evil and it’s not just these two men who are at fault,” Klingenschmitt added. “It is our laws as a society that need to be changed to prevent and protect children from this kind of abuse in the future.”
 
It’s always good to know that religiously righteous folks are protecting our morality.


2. House Speaker Paul Ryan. Last month, Ryan defended the GOP’s efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act and defund Planned Parenthood at a CNN town hall event hosted by Jake Tapper. He told an audience member who has relied on Planned Parenthood’s care that people who go to the women’s health organization should instead frequent community health centers (CHCs), which he said are in “virtually every community.” He added that if Congress does not defund Planned Parenthood, it would be committing “taxpayer funding for abortion.”
 
When Tapper pointed out that Planned Parenthood does not receive federal money for abortion services, which is already outlawed by the Hyde Amendment, Ryan said that the group uses money from other services to support abortion: “They get a lot of money and money’s fungible and it effectively floats—these organizations which then use other money. You know, money’s fungible.”
 
However, as former Planned Parenthood official Clare Coleman explains, this is far from the case. Title X grants, she notes, are “designed to help with costs, not to fully cover them. ” In the case of Medicaid reimbursements, she writes,  if a visit costs “upward of $200, ” the “Medicaid reimbursement rate may be as low as $20,” making it impossible for Planned Parenthood to take advantage of federal dollars “to spend other money in its budget to provide abortions.”
 
And as Media Matters noted, “experts agree that CHCs lack the capacity, experience, and resources to replace Planned Parenthood,” not to mention that people who use Planned Parenthood services choose to go there for health care. Ryan’s insistence that patients rely on CHCs also comes across as disingenuous, seeing that he is trying to repeal the very law that allocates billions of dollars to expanding CHCs and creating new ones, which increased “the number of patients receiving care from” such facilities “by nearly 3 million, from 17 to 20 million between 2008 and 2011.”
 
3. Lindsay Graham (R- SC). If Mitch McConnell’s explanation of Senate Republicans’ silencing of Elizabeth Warren—“She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted”—hadn’t become such an instant classic, this one from Lindsey Graham would be getting a little more attention. But, just as Lindsey languished in the shadows during his ill-fated presidential run, so too is his obnoxious crowing about silencing Warren not getting the (negative) attention it deserves:
 
“The bottom line is, it was long overdue with her. I mean, she is clearly running for the nomination in 2020.”
 
The man who ran for president and had to drop out because he had no support assails the presidential ambition of woman who refused to run for president despite a major campaign begging her to do so. Seriously, if we didn’t have “Nevertheless, she persisted,” would this not be a memeworthy encapsulation of the sexism of the moment?
 
And, seriously, if it was “long overdue” to silence every senator with presidential ambition, the Senate floor would be silent except for that woman who reads the roll calls. Nope, there’s something special about Elizabeth Warren—specifically, about the way she gets under Republican skin.
 
4. President Donald Trump.  On a call to Russian president Vladimir Putin President Trump reportedly had to ask aides what the New START Treaty was.  He then expressed doubts to Putin about extending the treaty, calling it a “bad deal.”   
 
On what is undoubtedly our most important post- World War II national security issue, has there ever been a more ill-informed president?  His cluelessness is scary.  Since he clearly does not understand the risks of nuclear weapons and commonsense measures to reduce the risk, he is, and the nation is, vulnerable to missteps.
 
The New START Treaty, negotiated by President Obama and then-Russian President Medvedev, was ratified in the US Senate by a rare bipartisan vote of 71-26.  It enjoys the overwhelming support of America’s military, intelligence, and national security leaders.  A Pentagon review found that the country could further reduce its stockpile by up to one-third without affecting US nuclear capability.  Trump, on the other hand, welcomes a nuclear arms race.  This is madness.  When it comes to nuclear weapons and war, there can be no winners.  Even the hawkish Ronald Reagan understood this. 
 
This is another example of the awesome display of the Trump’s raw ignorance. What’s worse is that the administration and their supporters don’t see the ignorance as a problem. Contemptuous of facts and expertise, they appear to believe that ignorance is strength. God help us.
 
5. James C. Green, Wasatch Co., Utah, GOP Vice Chairman. In a letter to the editor of his local newspaper, here’s what the moronic Green had to say about equal pay for women. (I include the full quote)
 
Editor: Here's the problem with the Equal Pay bill being considered by the Utah Legislature... Traditionally men have earned more than women in the workplace because they are considered the primary breadwinners for families. They need to make enough to support their families and allow the Mother to remain in the home to raise and nurture the children.


If businesses are forced to pay women the same as male earnings, that means they will have to reduce the pay for the men they employ... simple economics. If that happens, then men will have an even more difficult time earning enough to support their families, which will mean more Mothers will be forced to leave the home (where they may prefer to be) to join the workforce to make up the difference.

And as even more women thus enter the workforce that creates more competition for jobs (even men's jobs) and puts further downward pressure on the pay for all jobs... meaning more and more Mothers will be forced into the workforce. And that is bad for families and thus for all of society. It's a vicious cycle that only gets worse the more equality of pay is forced upon us. It's a situation of well-meaning intentions, but negative unintended consequences.

We should encourage our Legislators to drop the whole notion. Let the marketplace determine what free-market forces should prevail. It is not the role of government to dictate to businesses what they should pay anyway... either as a Minimum Wage or Equal Pay for men and women.
 
James C. Green
Wasatch Co. GOP Vice-Chair
 
I wonder what Mr. Green would say to the numerous single mothers working multiple jobs to make ends meet? Maybe the problem with them getting more money is that then they’ll be able to buy food stamps, which they will turn around and use to buy drugs? It’s hard to say, but James C. Green’s tiny brain only has space for one big idea at a time.
 
Speaking of “big ideas,” I’ve just had one come to me. In order to save taxpayers money, we should use the empty space in Mr. Green’s head to host the Olympics—there’s at least enough space for a pool. How about unequal pay for political idiots like Green?
 
6. Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ). In a discussion with CNN’s Brianna Keilar, Franks defended the construction of a barrier on the U.S.-Mexican border by arguing that a nuclear weapon could be smuggled across a porous border in a bale of marijuana. His words:
 
“ . . . . I can suggest to you that there are national security implications here for a porous border. We sometimes used to make the point that if someone wanted to smuggle in a dangerous weapon, even a nuclear weapon, into America, how would they do it? And the suggestion was made, “well, we’ll simply hide it in a bale of marijuana.” …. “So the implications of a porous border have national security dimensions that are very significant and that bear a lot of conversation when we talk about costs.”
 
Franks must have been pretty pleased with this absurdity since his website states he raised the same possibility on the House floor during an Aug.2, 2012 speech. At that time his bogeyman was Hezbollah, who might smuggle nuclear warheads “across the border in bales of marijuana.” He suggested they would call the White House and inform them where the first bomb would be detonated. “and then follow through 60 seconds later.”
 
Wow, brilliant! Why didn’t I think of that? If I were a terrorist who wanted to smuggle a nuclear warhead into the US, I could think of no better way than wrapping the thing in a big bale of weed-- no matter drug sniffing dogs and border guards on the lookout for drugs. Now, a wall makes sense. Can you believe that the keen-minded Franks is an elected representative of the people? Who are these voters?
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And the winner is:

Since I am determined to avoid giving Donald Trump any more monthly bonehead absurdity awards, given that he is totally incapable of uttering anything that isn’t absurd, I chose between James C. Green and Trent Franks. In a tight race, this month’s winner is the moronic Franks.



1 comment:

  1. LMAO! I have to say this is a close competition! All of them are so worthy of this month's award. In this case, I agree that Franks wins. My thought was about that porous border allowing a nuclear weapon through is that maybe he should look at that even longer border to the north that also doesn't have a wall. The oceans that come to our shores are huge. We need a wall around our shores because maybe a bale of marijuana with a nuclear weapon could float across the Mediterranean, across the Atlantic Ocean, and the currents would take it to New York City undetected! You just never know!

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